The Miami Heat open two-game road trip in Atlanta

MIAMI, FL - DECEMBER 16: Tyler Johnson
MIAMI, FL - DECEMBER 16: Tyler Johnson /

The Miami Heat are back on the road, facing off against the Atlanta Hawks on Monday night.

After beating the Los Angeles Clippers 90-85 in their last game, the Miami Heat are back on the road. They will first visit the Atlanta Hawks on Monday night, and then face off against the Boston Celtics on Wednesday, before returning home once more to host the Dallas Mavericks on Friday.

In their win over the Clippers on Saturday, the Heat got a career-high 28 points out of Josh Richardson, who during the month of December, has averaged 16.3 points per game, on 57.1 percent shooting from the field.

The victory signified more than just a successful game however, as it moved head coach Erik Spoelstra past president Pat Riley for the most wins by a coach in Heat history, with 455.

But there was also bad news, as forward James Johnson left the game in the first quarter, with a later-diagnosed case of ankle bursitis. Johnson is now expected to miss 7-10 days, adding yet another injury to Miami’s plate.

Without James Johnson, and possibly Justise Winslow (who is listed as doubtful), you can expect Spoelstra to continue giving Kelly Olynyk and Bam Adebayo more minutes together. He will also keep utilizing Jordan Mickey, who has been giving the Heat some solid minutes lately, especially if foul trouble creeps up again.

As mentioned above, the Heat (15-14) are coming off of a win over the Clippers, and are now looking to make it three wins in a row. This is despite a depleted roster, as Okaro White and Rodney McGruder are both still out for the foreseeable future. And both Winslow’s and Hassan Whiteside’s returns are still up in the air.

What’s worse, both Goran Dragic (elbow) and Dion Waiters (illness) are listed as questionable.

The silver-lining though is that the Hawks currently have the league’s worst record, at 6-23. They’re also coming off of a 96-94 loss to the Memphis Grizzlies, and have lost their last four games. Additionally, they will be without Dewayne Dedmon and Mike Muscala.

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The Heat certainly have an uphill battle ahead of them, with so many key assets currently sidelined. However, they should still be able to put up a fight against a struggling Hawks team. Tip off is at 7:30 PM ET.